increase government salesFiscal year 2013 ends  this month, and we wanted to offer some strategies to win contracts both this September—at the last opportunity– and in future years.   Almost one-quarter of all Federal small business spending occurs in September—3.5 times the normal monthly amount.

Behind the Government Small Business Sales Push in September:

High small business spending in September results from many agencies’ push to reach contracting goals.  Identifying  agencies that need to meet these goals are a good way to find year-end business prospects.  In contrast, those that miss their 2013 small business goals are likely to do the same in future years. Knowing these tendencies can help identify which agencies to target in fiscal year 2014.

In addition to knowing where agencies stand in meeting their goals, their historical averages of small business spending  may help predict how much they will spend at the end of the fiscal year.

For example, the Navy historically spends about 15% on small businesses, but currently in FY 2013, only a little over 10% of their dollars have gone to small businesses.  Thus, the Navy needs to spend $4 billion Navy to reach its historical average on small business spending. Checking the small businesses goals through the SBA will help.

Research to Narrow your Target

At Coley, we use many research tools to help our clients narrow their target to maximize efforts.  One free and valuable government tool is FPDS. This database contains all Federal transactions greater than $25,000 in value and, although not always easy to navigate,  it will provide you with current spending for these agencies. Utilize how to navigate on FPDS if you are a first-time user.

Build Relationships

It is vital to contract program managers and contracting officers who procure your type of goods and services in order to learn about opportunities. This relationship is important at any time in the fiscal year.

You can find the right contracting officers and program managers by getting in touch with small business officers at various agencies.  When talking with them, it is important to prepare well for the conversation by having a value proposition and a list of targeted expiring contacts.  Having a GSA Schedule makes you a preferred vendor, so always mention if you have a GSA Schedule or are in the process of getting one awarded.  A GSA Schedule simplifies the purchase process, so it is always a great vehicle to have for end-of -fiscal year spending.

Find Government Opportunities

Keep in touch with your key Federal contracts and you may have a better chance of winning business at the end of the fiscal year. Agencies who know you will be more likely to inform you of opportunities—including the unpublicized ones.

Your business development activities during the fourth quarter should be a continuation of what you have been building the entire year. However,  market research findings during this time will help focus your resources and target agencies where you have the best chances of success.

If you have any questions or need assistance with market research to grow your government sales, contact ColeyGSA.


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